Anyone else do this crap? Is it just an Italian thing? Doing it now. Please kill me.
Ah, shaddap-a you face!
It's also a French Canadian thing (réveillon). Lets us rest tomorrow.
We do both. Italian tonight, American tomorrow.
It's a German thing too, we spiced it up by always doing Mexican!
I'm going out.
Wouldn't an Italian family normally eat Italian on any day other than Christmas?
Serving Seven Fishes is related to the Seven Sacraments.
I don't know how the Italians eat all that food. I did Christmas at an Italian friend's home once and I was stuffed to the gills by the time I left.
I had a Mexican shrimp burrito for lunch!
Would you be rather at home alone, OP?
Christmas Eve dinner was crackers and cheese.
The Christmas eve repast in my family was always oyster stew and lobster tails.
The Episcopalian side of the family did Christmas Eve because there was midnight mass involved afterward. The Methodist side didn't do mass so had their big feast on Christmas Day.
Italians are all about food. You never go to someone's house without getting the full spread. I went to a WASPY house, and was shocked when they offered nothing to eat. I was happy, and slightly weirded out at the same time. We actually drove far to visit them, and we were starving.
It's just customary to be a good host. My family lived through the Great Depression, and while they actually had money during that time, they never wasted anything. As kids they would throw fits if we didn't finish something on our plates. We never did, and we'd have to hear about it for the rest of the day.
Italians are a fun bunch, if you have the right family. It can be a bit dramatic at times. They have impeccable homes. Half of my family is Irish, and the joke about 'lace curtains' was accurate.
We do Christmas Eve, but no mass - well, some go after dinner. I, the Satanist, don't join.
Catholic here. Not religious themed, but we always had oyster stew and crackers, stew made by an old maid school teacher up the road. Tonight, MANY years later, am having cheese and crackers, with a chaser of vanilla ice cream.
white castle (or taco bell if you are WC deprived)
Brown rice, steamed broccoli, and veggie burger patties.
Fish tacos (no jokes please) made with fresh tilapia, & rainbow slaw.
I loved watching one of our normally standoffish cats whore it up for a bit of fish.
We just finished and are settling in to watch Christmas movies on Netflix.
For whatever reason my family has always had the tradition of doing the big dinner on Christmas Eve and then doing a big breakfast with all the fixings on Christmas day. As I type my mother and aunt are in the kitchen preparing everything. I'm a bit tipsy now but it's the only way to endure a large family gathering like this.
R22 Posting from the front lines. Tomorrow morning I will pop the pre-cooked spiral ham in the oven, along with the mashed yams and marshmallows and dinner rolls. It's just three of us. Me, Dad, BF. But it's gonna be a pretty skimpy repast. BTW, has anyone ever prepared Collard Greens before? Out of a can? Sounds gross but the BF likes it.
I'm getting takeout tonight. Tomorrow dinner out with best friend. Simple enough.
The Bush family (ie, Gampy, Dubya, Pickles, etc.) eats Mexican food on Xmas Eve.
OP, we do Xmas Eve dinner, but we're Italian (on my mom's side - my parents are divorced btw). Lasagna, pasta, meatballs and veal cutlets tonight, and a traditional turkey dinner tomorrow. My mom makes all the Italian stuff and has traditionally given the turkey dinner the short end of the stick, so I took most of it over. I buy a heritage turkey, brine it for 24 hours beforehand, and then make homemade dressing and gravy (my mom used to buy nasty shit straight out of a box).
It's common throughout much of continental Europe for Xmas to be celebrated on Xmas Eve with a meal or family get-together.
Christmas Eve dinner, Christmas day is pretty boring. No big dinner or anything. Christmas day I have to visit another set of relatives to exchange gifts. It never ends.
Christ, and then it's New Year's.
I swear, just once I'd love to do nothing, and have a real holiday. Just once. I'm not completely anti-social. It just makes me exhausted.
Yep, I am making a traditional eel dish, as well as clams casino.
[quote]The Bush family (ie, Gampy, Dubya, Pickles, etc.) eats Mexican food on Xmas Eve.
How would you like to be the maid who has to clean the bathroom after that dinner? I bet they need industrial cleaners after Barb has had her fill of tacos and refried beans?
Tonight I had one of those little bacon-wrapped steaks, a baked potato, and a small Greek salad for supper … by myself.
Already lounging around in my caftan; earrings on. Turban, too. Thong and clogs. The whole ensemble.
Headed to my brother's house at 2 PM for the traditional Christmas Dinner tomorrow.
I made a batch of chili this afternoon. That was our midwestern Methodist thing. Mine's a lot spicier than Mom's ever was.
Yes, we filipinos traditionally do it too. Big dinner on Christmas Eve where dinner has to end past midnight, not before. Then, opening presents the next morning after breakfast. Then, leftovers during Christmas day dinner.
Don't a lot of people do Chinese take out for Christmas Eve? I thought that was a thing.
r34 -- maybe if you live in california.
We used to get Chinese takeout every Christmas Eve here in Michigan. We stopped getting it when you could no longer find one with a great Almond Chicken. For some reason the old 50s-style Chinese restaurants (yes I like
Americanized Chinese food, blow me food snobs) have all gone downhill.
We just had hot dogs tonight, because we're having a ton of Polish food tomorrow and didn't feel like cooking after getting the shopping done today.
R23, I love collard greens and crave them during the winter, but never from a can. Sounds awful, like canned spinach.
I'm Italian - we do Christmas Eve dinner like you wouldn't believe!
I make arancini (fried rice balls), asparagus, Italian bread, salami, various cheeses, olives, roasted red peppers, baked pasta with meat sauce (all from scratch), cannoli and struffoli for dessert.
R16 -- WASP from post above posting to say that I went to an Italian friend's for a Sunday dinner, and blurted out, "This is more food than we have at Thanksgiving!"
Growing up with a big extended Irish Catholic family my grandparents used to do a Christmas Eve buffet (the kids, about 15 of us, got mini hamburgers but we always tried to sneak the grownup buffet which was shrimp cocktail, sliced tenderloin on mini rye with horseradish and red onions, and steak tartar on the same mini ryes. seriously even as little kids we loved that stuff.
As we got older they included us with the grownups. Santa ( who was often drunk) would come and presents and cookies would start. Lots of booze. Ending the night with a big card game of 99 with a dollar buy in winner takes all.
We would leave late that night and travel 2 or three hours depending on the weather ( often driving through big snow storms in a station wagon) back home so we could wake up and do the just our family opening presents then my dad would cook a casual brunch still in our pajamas. This part was my favorite.
Later a bunch of their friends would get together and we'd all do a big traditional dinner.
Struffoli! OMG, I haven't had them in years. Do you put the multi-colored sprinkles on them?
Oyster stew sounds like the poor folks version of Seven Fishes.
I think in most Latino cultures Xmas eve dinner is the main feast.
I'm Cuban and when we lived down in L.A. my uncle would drive out to the boondocks, pick a live pig, have it slaughtered and then slowly barbecue it for 20 plus hours in a BBQ pit dug in his back yard. The dinner had such Cuban staples as black beans, con gris (sp?) which is basically a black bean flavored rice, fried bananas and plaintains, maybe some yucca, and a salad of tomatoes, cucumbers and radishes in olive oil and vinegar dressing. There might also be some American side dishes like dinner rolls, stuffing and the like, though this meal hardly needed any more carbs.
For desert my mother would make these two ENORMOUS sheet pans of flan. She would also make dulce de coco, a.k.a. coconut preserves which was served with cheese--usually Edam or non-smoked Gouda. There might also be a dulce de cerisas, a.k.a. cherry preserves. Did I forget to mention Cuban bread at the meal? Slathered in olive oil and garlic, or just butter for the kids.
My aunt would also start the empandas for midnight. She made both ground beef and raisin ones (gross really), and guava paste stuffed empanadas--delicious but you could really burn the roof of your mouth on the hot guava.
Other traditional Xmas treats include turon, or as the Italians say: torrone. Nougat candy with nuts (usually almonds) a soft and a hard version. I actually prefer Italian torrone to the Spanish style turon. I usually by an Italian torrone with almonds and pistachio and chocolate coating, but I didn't get around to it this year.
There would be twenty people at these dinners, but with a whole pig in the backyard, people were usually sent home with platters of pork. Meanwhile, there would still be leftovers which fed people who visited on Xmas day and they were usually sent home with food as well.
I haven't had one of these traditional dinners in about 30 years. Miss the food. Don't miss the family.
We're going to my parents' tomorrow for a large feast -- lasagna, ravioli and meatballs, eggplant parm. Tonight just a quiet meal of soup and sandwiches, with "A Christmas Story" warbling in the background.
I'm jealous of just about every one on this thread!
WASP Canadian here. I made tourtiere pies for dinner Saturday, had some friends over. Tonight made grilled beef tenderloin steak topped by a creamy dijon mustard sauce. Off to the intended laws tomorrow for turkey dinner.
OP, I recommend this thread for you. Polar opposite.
I'm surprised to read about the Italians here having meat on Christmas Eve. I haven't been in a Catholic church in years but I still try to keep up the tradition and abstain.
We just finished dinner. Ok, so it was only 6 fishes but there are only two of us.
Crab cakes on arugula salad
Linguine with seafood sauce (clams, mussels, shrimp, anchovies)
Baked stuffed lobster tail (shrimp in the stuffing).
Dessert is the flans we made for dinner yesterday.
I'm about to explode. This is three days in a row of major eating.
My family always did the big meal Christmas Eve. Dad's dead, she's elderly and is over cooking so I took over the job. It's funny - preparing the meal today really put me in the holiday spirit
My mother insisted I serve at 2 pm. I pitched a hissy fit (in my haid), but it really turned out perfect. Guests came, had a lovely time and now they're gone and it's only about 7 pm PST.
Tomorrow Mom wants to go to the Casino. Go Mom!
Christmas Eve is the holiday for me.. Christmas day...rest. Maybe a movie and chinese with jewish friends.
A Finn-Swede background here. We would have our dinner on Christmas Eve. It would consist of lutfisk, which is cod soaked in lye and then washed. It looks like jello and stinks. To make it palatable, it gets drowned in white sauce. The gifts would be opened in the evening. Of course, we Finn-Swedes are known for our copious alcohol consumption. A "God Jul" to all.
Brown rice and vegetables. Evian.
It was a festive and filling meal.
The cast of "GODDESS" now appearing at the Stardust
Another Swede here, we had a great feast last night!
But I omitted the Lutfisk. I'm saving the eel for tonight. No one ever joins me.
I've been spending many years with my French Canadian partner and his family. Christmas Eve is the big event attended by all of the relatives and when almost all of the Christmas presents are opened. Tourtiere pie, lots of sides and Bûche de Noël for dessert.
On Christmas day everyone is back to their respective homes for a small family meal.
Italians do it right on Xmas eve.
[quote]Don't a lot of people do Chinese take out for Christmas Eve? I thought that was a thing.
That's what Jews do.
latino/Irish here- we always did and sometimes still do- Christmas Eve- latino time- chiles enogadas, tamales, enchiladas, rice/beans , soem version of a mexican flank steak, my parguayan grandmother made empanadas for dessert were sopapias and the paraguaya grandmas infamous "Claricol"- basically she would take a huge jar like for sun tea, fill it with various chopped fruits and then add a couple of bottles of rum. sits in the back of the fridge for about a week before Xmas.- Next day was the Irish side-traditional- roast beef ,mashed potatos etc
We always ate cold cuts on rolls and cold salad (potato, macaroni) and pickles on Christmas Eve. My mother is an insanely religious person and insanely vain, so she would spend three hours getting ready for mass. Ergo, no cooking on Christmas Eve. Everything came from Hans' German Deli. Hans made the best potato salad on the planet, so I didn't feel deprived on Christmas Ece when everyone else was eating their delicacies that took hours to cook.
His mac salad was also excellent. And we got to eat off paper plates and use paper napkins and throw everything in the garbage after eating. No washing and drying dishes for me and sis. Yay.
[quote]I'm surprised to read about the Italians here having meat on Christmas Eve.
I'm surprised that any Catholics grew up eating meat on December 24th. Meat was forbidden at meals on Christmas Eve, that's why the 7 fishes in Italy, carp in other countries and non-meat traditions in the US.
[quote] Meat was forbidden at meals on Christmas Eve,
Not in the 1950s My mother was a super duper catholic and we never fasted on Christmas Eve, which means it was not a fast day. My mother did not disobey the church.
Yes, in the 1950s, r62. My mother, a convert, knew the Catholic rules and knew it was a fast day. The nuns at school impressed that upon us, also.
Christmas Eve is not a day of abstinence, the entire requirement was thrown out in 1983. Before that, you could substitute another form of penance instead of abstaining from meat starting in About 1959.
The only two days of fast and abstinence at Ash Wednesday and Good Friday. Anyone abstaining from eating meat on any other days is showboating.
And Friday's in lent. Fast and abstinence on Ash Wednesday and Good Friday, abstinence only on Lenten Friday's.
My mom grew up Catholic. The family priest said as long as she would stop eating pussy, God would take care of the rest.